To the Dams II
As an unofficial advocate of mares, I wanted to write another article dedicated to mares who have had Pharoah foals. After all, they contribute fifty percent of a foal’s DNA. Also, while writing other articles I’ve learned some interesting information about some Pharoah foal dams. So, without further ado, here’s another article to the dams!
Starting with Delightful Joy. A lightly raced daughter of Tapit, who didn’t hit the track until her three-year-old season (sound familiar?). Though lightly raced, she broke her maiden on her first attempt. She didn’t do well in a graded stakes race in her second start (sound familiar?), but she did earn her graded stakes win two races later, and in such a fashion that she made headlines in two different articles.
The first, a BloodHorse article. “In Saturday's race, White Clover moved up between horses in the backstretch to take the lead from High Dollar Woman, who completed a half-mile in :46.91. In the turn White Cover held off the still-energized High Dollar Woman, but the winner and several other fillies were starting their rallies. At the eighth pole, Delightful Joy rallied four wide under Paco Lopez, with four horses across the track—including grade II-placed Eskenformoney , White Clover, and Tiger Ride —shortly after the eighth pole. Delightful Joy was moving best of all and drew clear late, completing 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.74 on a fast track.” (BloodHorse article, August 22nd, 2015, “Delightful Joy Wins Stakes Debut at Monmouth,” by Frank Angst)
(If you recognize the name White Clover, it’s because she’s had Pharoah foal herself, named Western Pharoah.)
"I was told to get a good start and see where I was after the break. I wanted to be comfortable, and I tucked in a little behind," Lopez, her jockey, said. "I knew that feeling with her from the first time I rode her. I just started to get her going and was looking for a hole. When I asked her, she gave me everything she had. She is a really nice filly." (BloodHorse article, August 22nd, 2015, “Delightful Joy Wins Stakes Debut at Monmouth,” by Frank Angst. Paulick Report, August 23rd, 2015, “Delightful Joy Rallies for Monmouth Oaks Win,” by Press Release)
She retired in 2015 (the same year as Pharoah) with a record of 6: 3-1-1, and earnings of $179,200, with her last race being a second-place finish in the G3 Turnback the Alarm Handicap.
She has two foals that are of racing age, and her filly by Pharoah will be old enough to race next year. However, it will be interesting to see if the foal is raced late in it’s two-year-old season, like her half-sister by War Front, or if whoever races her will wait for her to turn three, like her dam.
Joyful Victory, an Ontario bred multiple graded stakes winning, 2013 Older Female Eclipse finalist daughter of Tapit. With a record of 20: 7-5-4, and earnings of $1,252,679, and she was the leading stakes earner for her sire in 2013.
She certainly gave her owner, Fox Hill Farm, a joyful ride. Earning her first graded stakes win at three by a whopping 9 lengths, after finishing 3rd and 5th respectively in two grade one races, the latter being the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies. This impressive trend continued throughout her career, as she finished off the board in only three other races - the Kentucky Oaks where she finished 4th, the Coaching Club American Oaks, where she finished 5th, and the Ogden Phipps Handicap, where she finished 5th. She handled travel with ease, racing at ten different tracks, while crisscrossing the country, though mostly staying in the East. Her four-year racing career ended with a third in the graded one Zenyatta Stakes.
"I have decided that Joyful Victory has done all and more than (trainer) Larry Jones and I have asked of her during the last four years," Porter, her owner, said in an entry on the Fox Hill website. "I have been very proud to race Joyful Victory in the red and white silks of Fox Hill Farm, but it is time for her to begin her career in the breeding shed. She will fit right in with any of the top broodmare bands worldwide. She is by the top sire Tapit and is his leading earner in 2013 and fifth leading lifetime earner. She ticks all the boxes to be a successful broodmare. I went to Santa Anita (Sept. 28) hoping to see her win her last career start, but it was not to be. At least I was able to witness her final race.” (BloodHorse article: September 30th, 2013, “Joyful Victory Retired, to be Sold at F-T,” by Ron Mitchell.)
Rags to Riches, a hard-hitting, daughter of legendary sire A. P. Indy, is famous for besting Curlin by a nose in, “The Test of Champions”, the Belmont Stakes.
With this, she earned the “NTRA Moment of the Year”, as well as a very memorable race-call, by Tom Durkin, the track announcer at the time.
“Here comes Hard Spun. And Curlin is coming through in between horses! And Rags to Riches is coming with a four-wide sweep! And Tiago is in behind them. And at the top of the stretch, a filly is in front at the Belmont! But Curlin is right there with her! These two, in a battle of the sexes at the Belmont Stakes! It is Curlin on the inside – Rags to Riches on the outside. A desperate finish: Rags to Riches and Curlin! They're coming down to the wire. It's gonna be very close! And it's gonna be. ... a filly in the Belmont! Rags to Riches has beaten Curlin and a hundred years of Belmont history! The first filly to win it in over a century!" (Tom Durkin, June 9, 2007, Belmont Stakes Call)
She would also be the last, as of 2021.
“I still consider it to be our sweetest victory,” Pletcher, her trainer, said during a 2016 interview at Belmont Park. “It was the first classic for us, and any time you win a classic, that is significant in its own right. The fact that it was with a filly, and it hadn’t happened in 100 years, made it more so.” (America’s Best Racing Article, May 16th, 2021, “Belmont Winner Rags to Riches in League of Her Own,” by Tom Pedulla.)
Pletcher is not one to shoot from the hip. Every move he makes is thought out thoroughly and re-thought. He debated long and hard about whether to enter Rags to Riches in the Belmont, and ultimately decided to do so only after Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense was withdrawn from consideration. Getting the mile and a half in the Belmont has so much to do with breeding. The bloodlines of Rags to Riches made it compelling to give her an opportunity to go that uncommon distance. Her sire, A.P. Indy, took the Belmont In 1992. Her dam, Better Than Honour, produced Jazil, the Belmont winner in 2006. (America’s Best Racing Article, May 16th, 2021, “Belmont Winner Rags to Riches in League of Her Own,” by Tom Pedulla.)
“She seemed to be put on earth for this type of race,” Pletcher said. Rags to Riches was no delicate lady, asserting herself in the barn and on the racetrack. “There was never any question we felt she was the type of filly you could consider taking on the colts with,” her trainer noted. “She was big enough, strong enough.” (America’s Best Racing Article, May 16th, 2021, “Belmont Winner Rags to Riches in League of Her Own,” by Tom Pedulla.)
Even a stumble at the start didn’t put a hitch in her step, thanks to her jockey, John Velazquez.
Though that alone is not what secured her the titles of, “World Champion 3-year-old Filly,” and, “Champion Three-Year-Old Filly,” and a nomination at the “Teen Choice Awards” for “Choice Female Athlete”. As well as having a black type stakes race named after her at Churchill Downs. Those were won (and she was honored) with the help of her almost undefeated three-year-old season where her only loss was placing second in the G1 Gazelle Stakes, and her only non-graded race was her second attempt at breaking her maiden, in which she succeeded. The day after her only loss that year it was revealed that she had suffered a hairline fracture. Six months later, a comeback was attempted, but before she could even race, she was injured again, and retired.
Of the many sires to which she’s bred, the two that have made fans excited the most are: Curlin, her Belmont, “rival,” and American Pharoah. For the later, it was, “third time’s the charm,” as she did not have a foal by him, the first two times she was bred to him (for whatever reason). Their colt, foaled in 2020, is the only foal in history, to have two Belmont winners, as parents.
Sweet N Discreet, doesn’t have a great record to boast, though she managed to end it on a lovely note. With a second in the black type Ocala Stakes, making a big splash in the black type Florida Sunshine Millions Distaff Stakes, and ending her career with a second in the G2 Sabin Stakes.
“I was (concerned about the distance), until about the three-eighths pole, and then I felt pretty good about it,” Pletcher, her trainer, said. “She's a filly that we always thought a lot of, especially as a 2-year-old. It took her a little while to get everything together, and it took her trainer about two years to figure out that she wanted to run longer.” (Paulick Report article, January 18th, 2014, “Sweet N Discreet Makes Splash in Two-Turn Debut in Sunshine Millions Distaff,” by Press Release)
A homebred for the E. Paul Robsham Stables, Sweet N Discreet broke alertly from her rail post and relaxed in third while tracking the tepid pace set by Devil's Cave. Odds-on Toasting was at the back of the pack through six furlongs in 1:14 2/5, and jockey Joe Bravo gave Sweet N Discreet her cue on the far turn. The Discreet Cat filly quickened up and took command. Devil's Cave continued on gamely, but Sweet N Discreet held her at bay for a 1 1/2-length success while completing the nine furlongs in 1:50 1/5. Toasting made up some ground to finish third while never threatening the top two fillies. (Paulick Report article, January 18th, 2014, “Sweet N Discreet Makes Splash in Two-Turn Debut in Sunshine Millions Distaff,” by Press Release)
“It unfolded sort-of how we thought it would,” Pletcher added. “We were able to get into a good, comfortable spot and pop outside and get into a nice rhythm down the backside. She was traveling really well. It looked like Joe went into the far turn with a lot of horse and decided to blow the race open right there, and he was able to do it.” (Paulick Report article, January 18th, 2014, “Sweet N Discreet Makes Splash in Two-Turn Debut in Sunshine Millions Distaff,” by Press Release)
Bravo had been in the irons for Sweet N Discreet's last three starts.
“She ran really relaxed and comfortable the first part of the race,” he (Bravo) said. “She had a really nice target off those other horses. Because she was able to go so easy, she was able to have that good turn of foot that she shows sprinting and stretch it out to a mile and an eighth. She ran great today. My hat's off to (trainer) Todd (Pletcher); he did all the work.” (Paulick Report article, January 18th, 2014, “Sweet N Discreet Makes Splash in Two-Turn Debut in Sunshine Millions Distaff,” by Press Release)
She has two foals of racing age, the best being four-year-old Sweet Melania, her almost mini me by Pharoah. Sweet N Discreet foaled a full sister to Sweet Melania this year.
Antipathy, may not catch your eye because of her race record, as much as for being a half-sister to Scat Daddy, the three-time leading juvenile sire in Chile (2009-11), 2011 leading North American freshman sire, and sire of the 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify.
A late developing mare, she raced once at two, finishing 5th, and twice at three, breaking her maiden and finishing 3rd in an allowance optional claiming. Her best year would be at four. Starting slowly before finishing 1st and having back-to-back 2nds in allowance optional claiming races. Finally, in the summer of that year, she finished a strong 3rd, in the G1 Ogden Phipps, won the G3 Shuvee Stakes, and finished her career with a 4th in the G1 Personal Ensign Stakes, each race roughly a month apart.
She has three foals of racing age, a yearling by Gun Runner, and had a filly by Pharoah this year.
Possibly overlooked for many reasons, Sweeping Paddy caught my eye because her sire, Paddy O’Prado, was the first horse I ever, “bet,” on. Back in the 2010 Kentucky Derby.
Breaking her maiden in only her second try by a dazzling 12 ¼ lengths, it’s hard to find much on her, given it took her nearly a full year before she won again.
Sounds un-impressive unless you take a closer look.
In only her third start, she finished fourth in the G3 Jessamine Stakes.
With a full field for fourteen other horses, she broke sharply from post five, and settled into fourth. At the ½ mile mark, she had quickly worked her way into second. She held this position until the final turn, where, looking like she had burned herself out, other horses started to pass by her. Only two however, as she dug down to finish fourth.
Certainly sounds um-impressive, but, with La Coronel winning by 4 ¼ lengths, not much separated Sweeping Paddy, third place finisher Rum Go, or Lull, who claimed second.
This was also the third start she had made since her debut two months before, and maiden win, one month before.
Her next three races are probably where people began to lose interest.
She finished 8th in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, in her first race outside of Kentucky. Dropping level in her first start of the new year, she finished 7th in an allowance optional claiming, followed by a 6th place finish in the G3 Herecomesthebride Stakes.
And yet…her first race at three was only two months after the Breeders’ Cup, at Gulfstream (whereas the Breeders’ Cup was at Santa Anita. With Gulfstream being in Florida, and Santa Anita, California) and the G3 was two months after that. Not much downtime in-between races.
With less after that, as she finished second in an allowance one month later.
Another month later and she was back with a third-place finish in the G3 Edgewood Stakes, against twelve other horses.
Breaking sharply from post nine and taking a very close second, which she kept until just before the final turn, where she grabbed the lead, only to lose it, in the final yards, but not by much. It was also her first-time racing in the rain, though, on a track listed, “good.”
The next month, she would finally earn the graded win that had been alluding her, in the G3 Regret Stakes. Where I’ll simply focus, on what I consider, to be the best part.
“This horse is so special to us,” Romans, her trainer, said. “I've trained her mother, grandmother and father. What a great win for us and the owners. She just came flying home at the end. I thought Luis (Saez) gave her a perfect ride. What more could you ask for?” (Paulick Report, June 17th, 2017, “Sweeping Paddy Scores Easily in Regret,” Paulick Report Staff)
One month later, she concluded her career with a last place finish, in the G3 Lake George Stakes. Even then, she was up front until the final turn.
In what was, “only,” ten starts, she ran four times at two, from September through November. Starting her three-year-old season two months later, then racing every month, two months after that, from March through July, and traveling quite a bit, as well.
It is my belief, that Sweeping Paddy is a perfect example, for taking a closer look as to what’s on paper.
Easy Living, has had two fillies by Pharoah, a two-year-old named My Kentucky Girl and one born this year.
According to Stonehaven Steadings, the farm where she lives, “Easy Living was one of our best purchases. At just 60k she slipped through the cracks in book 1 keenov, she's big and beautiful, and a good racehorse.”
Lightly raced, she debuted late in her two-year-old season, finishing second. After an eight-month break, she broke her maiden in her second asking. Racing four times in two months, she finished 4th in an allowance, won one the next month, finished 5th in the Saratoga Dew Stakes the next month, and 7th in the Fleet Indian Stakes ten days later at the same track. Only racing twice at four, she finished her career with a win in an allowance optional claiming, and a 3rd in the Critical Eye Stakes. Her whole career took place in New York.
She has three foals of racing age, including My Kentucky Girl, who is currently un-raced.
High Heeled Girl, unfortunately didn’t have much luck on the track, racing only three times.
Though, with dams, that isn’t as important as with stallions. Boasting a lovely pedigree and being a daughter of the now late Malibu Moon, certainly helps.
Stonehaven Steading, the farm where she lives, describes her as “One of our prettiest mares we got at auction. From a Castlyon Lyons family, she makes beautiful horses!”
While that may sound silly, given that she only has two foals of racing age, making beautiful horses, and having a lovely pedigree, are what helps her foals sell well.
Our journey ends with Randie’s Legend, owned by Hank Nothhaft, (who’s other mares, Kindle and Halljoy (IRE) are featured in the first article) is a California bred mare, named after Mr. Nothhaft’s wife (the, “R,” in HnR Nothhaft Horse Racing LLC) and was purchased as a yearling for $43K.
Unfortunately, despite showing dazzling speed in her training, a knee problem forced her to be retired before ever reaching the starting gate.
Though disappointing, her pedigree gave hope in terms of making her a broodmare.
“The 2nd Dam, Eternal Search had a phenomenal pedigree. She was Canadian Champion Sprinter once and Champion Older Horse twice and won 18 times & very successful as a broodmare. The 3red Dam Bon Debarras was even more successful as a broodmare and one of her off spring produced Classic Winner Exaggerator, ( long after I bought RL) among others.
The first dam produced 3 foals before dying in a freak accident. There was no Black Type under the first dam when I purchased Randie’s Legend. Subsequently, Eternal Rule became a Multiple Stakes Winner and Frumious won a Grade 2.” Mr. Nothhaft.
To start her broodmare career, she was bred to Smarty Jones, making her the first horse Mr. Nothhaft bred in Pennsylvania (where Smarty Jones was bred, and where Mr. Nothhaft is quite active, being a director of the PHBA (PABRED). The resulting foal was a filly named Smarty’s Legend, who is also a broodmare.
“I recognized that Randie’s Legend’s pedigree had improved and was worthy of the risk of breeding to high end commercial sires. As it turned out, this was a successful strategy. RL has been very commercial producing a number of 6 figure foals. Her best offspring is Daddy is a Legend by Scat Daddy who is still active and a PABRED. She is a Multiple Graded Stakes Winner banking $642K. She placed in a Grade I at Belmont a couple of weeks ago. In the pipeline are Party Line Vote by Tiznow trained by Chad Brown for Klaravich and Night Music by Candy Ride owned by Muir Stables on the West Coast. Then there is Randie’s Legend 20 by American Pharoah. He lives with RL at Coolmore America. Many who have seen him think that he is the best yearling located at Coolmore this year. Also, he looks very much like American Pharoah which is cool.” Mr. Nothhaft.
The American Pharoah colt will be sold at this year’s Fasig-Tipton, “The (Select) Saratoga Sale,” in August. There are pictures aplenty on the HnR Nothhaft Horse Racing LLC Facebook page (then, kindly tagged to the Pharoah Phoal one) and his hip number, plus, possibly more pictures and a walking video will be posted to the Pharoah Phoal Facebook page, when the catalog is released.
“It has been a wonderful journey with her. She is a blue-collar mare who worked her way up to royalty living with all that high priced bloodstock at Coolmore.” Mr. Nothhaft.
Her favorite treats are carrots, and she is currently in foal to Justify.
This photo of Randie's Legend, is Mr. Nothhaft's favorite.
While this photo shows Kindle, with Confidential Act (left) and Randie's Legend, with Belleau Wood (both foaled in 2017, and both now geldings)